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Fantasy Code: Feral

Barry's eyes grew for a second when Manjano accepted. Of all the people, he took him to be much more stubborn. Grabbing the food requested he displayed the bountiful meal. Soon, he had to lean in to hear the next request. His soft voice grew softer at the mention of helping more as well as humility. Following Manjano's glace, he took note of the bigger picture at hand. Standing back up, he collected a new plate which felt hotter than his own. Surely just dried from a wash. Walking to the bacon, took up the tongs. From the corner of his eye, he noticed Beth walking over with greetings. Matching her smile, he waved the tongs. He wasn't sure what a "ton" of bacon was for Falarion but a good heaping pile would surly suffice. Turning he noticed the interaction before him. No doubt they were fairly close. Pursing his lips to the side, he also shifted eyes between the two. He waved off the offer, unsure if she noticed or not. Scooping up his own plate, he lifted the bacon plate to Manjano while sliding away to the table. "Third wheeling, not my thing." He thought to himself, avoiding the awkward showdown.
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As he approached the table again, he presented the bacon pile to Falarion. Giving Simon and Jimbo a quick wave, he claimed his seat once more. Looking back down to him, Barry pointed to his own head and presented an "OK" sign as a question. Even today, there is still a lingering headache for himself. At least the dizziness was all gone. Hearing Xiao Hui offer tea, Barry raised his hand.
"Bad Boy Barry wants your most expensive tea. Put it on his tab, He told me specifically to tell you all that." BB called back. Rolling over from focusing on Amber only to be met with a cross look from Barry. "Whaaaaaat, I bet there is tons of teas you want to try, Tea Boy. I'll call you Terry now. Berry Boy doesn't cut it anymore. Terry, now that's a name I can get behind." She stood up and looked to Simon. "Ugh, I wish I could sleep. This kid snores as loud as a jet taking off. Imagine quiet ol' me having to live through that noise every night. Torture I tell you! Could probably mess up air wave signals if we tapped into his raw voice." Suddenly, a light thud sounded to her side as Barry set down her morning meal. Staring at her dissatisfied, he opened it for her. "Just eat already you little trouble maker." He huffed in his head. "I mean, it's no bitter black coffee like my soul but I guess the sweet sweet nectar can balance me out." She flew up to the side of his face, giving him a pecking kiss before zooming to her food. "Thaaaaaanks bud!" Going for the food, she stopped herself. "Oh yeah, Terry wanted to know what kinda stuff is going down today. He's all about seeing hunky men on the beach. His words, not mine!" She shrilled quickly before dipping her beak into the nectar.
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Name: Manjano
Location: Hotel Lobby
Tagged: SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Alec, & Duik), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo)
While he anxiously waited for Barry to respond, Manjano soon heard someone approaching and glanced sideways to see Beth joining them. Almost immediately his cheeks flushed, as he realized his predicament and the fact that Beth was now aware of it. He had been trying really hard to avoid the reality of his injured foot, but it was nigh impossible. He could already hear Totus' chortling in his head, imagining how the owl likely was amused by his efforts. He sighed as Beth lightly touched his arm and was about to defend himself before she whispered to him. He paused at this and then struggled to not look too irritated. He absolutely hated not being on the move and now he was officially benched until his stupid foot healed. He had nearly forgotten about the aches in his foot until Beth whispered to him and soon thereafter, he grimaced. She was right, whether or not he was willing to admit it. Honestly, he just wanted a coffee before any of this. At least he would be more awake to handle these scenarios then.

Almost as if perfectly cued, Beth then mentioned getting a latte for herself and extended an offer to get drinks for himself and Barry. Manjano did not even hesitate before he responded, "A coffee with cream would be amazing right about now." He then hesitated and glanced back at Barry. He said quietly, "I don't want to ask so much of everyone, though. I'm sure I could go order my own coffee." He was already starting to hate his reliance on others to help him. The doctors had told him it could be several weeks, even a month or longer before his foot fully healed. That did not include the physical therapy he would no doubt need afterwards, too.

At this point, Manjano noticed Barry handing off the plate he had helped make for Manjano while being kind enough to take Falarion's plate to him. As Barry made his escape, Manjano could not help but chuckle quietly at the sight. Barry must have some innate fear of hanging around couples or something. Manjano supposed he had never enjoyed being the third wheel for Leandra and her boyfriends in the past. Thus, he could understand the urge to flee the scene, though it was still amusing.
Name: Leandra Sinciato Companion: Luness
Location: Hotel
Tagged: deer deer (Xiao Hui), SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Duik, & Alec), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB)
Leandra had to resist the urge to lean in towards her best friend, as Xiao Hui pondered how she should begin her own story. It had been surprisingly relieving to share such a dark part of her past with someone she trusted. It was like a weight had been lifted from her shoulders after all the years of keeping that inside of her. She felt confident that Xiao Hui would feel the same way once she shared her own dark past. Thus, Leandra kept her eyes focused on Xiao Hui, as she began to tell her own tale.

Yet, as Xiao Hui began to tell her story, Leandra felt increasingly saddened by what she heard. It was so sweet and uplifting to hear that Laohu had kept Xiao Hui company for several years before they officially bonded. Hearing how much she had suffered and lost made Leandra wince for her friend. Leandra did not fully understand what it was like to lose a parent since she had never really met her own true parents. To hear that on top of all the bloodshed on her 15th birthday, she had nearly been murdered, Leandra furrowed her brows and took one of Xiao Hui's hands again. She wiped a lone tear from her own cheeks before she squeezed Xiao Hui's hand for reassurance. To suffer so much and yet to still be able to smile today, Leandra knew her friend was stronger than most.

As Xiao Hui concluded her story, Leandra nodded at the mention of Laohu being everything to Xiao Hui. She most certainly understood that. Despite everything she herself had gone through, Leandra still felt as if Luness was everything to her, too. She glanced over at Luness in that moment and Luness felt the attention before Leandra could bring herself to look away. In a moment, the pair were staring at each other from across the hotel lobby and Leandra knew: They would heal and they would overcome. They always did.

Before Xiao Hui retired to her room that night, Leandra stood up from the table and gave her a hug. As she did, she whispered, "Despite the darkness in our pasts, we can still find light today. Luness always reminds me of this and I wanted to remind you, too." She then took a step back and smiled. "Goodnight, Xiao Hui," she said as she started heading towards the hot tub area.

By the time she got there, most had vacated the area, but Luness was still perched on the edge of the hot tub. Leandra hesitated a foot away, her mind reeling at the flashes of memory that rushed to her mind from the warehouse. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath before she eased her mind away from the chaos and slowly, she reopened her connection to Luness. She heard a gasp below her and opened her eyes to see Luness staring up at her with wide eyes. Tears brimmed the phoenix's face and Leandra inhaled sharply before she kneeled down and Luness hopped into her open arms. Mindful of Luness' injured wing, Leandra hugged her companion and the two quietly cried together. Leandra began rambling, as she said, "I'm so sorry, Lune. I just was so afraid and hurt and terrified. I didn't realize I was hurting both of us and I was such an idiot. I'm sorry!"

Luness halfheartedly laughed and then replied softly, "Dear, you know I could never be upset with you. You are forgiven and I still love you as much as I ever have and always will."

Carefully, Leandra picked up Luness and helped her perch on Leandra's shoulder before Luness nestled down and nudged her head against Leandra's cheek. Leandra laughed and wiped away her tears, as the pair took an elevator to their room.


In the morning, Leandra rolled over in her bed and grumbled at the sunlight shining through her blinds. Luness was busily preening her feathers, pulling out a few that she no longer cared for. She paused at the sound of Leandra's grumbling and glanced up to say, "Dear, you cannot chase away the sun now that it is morning." Leandra glared at Luness from underneath her pile of blankets and said, "I can try." Luness raised an eyebrow at this, but said no more. Leandra slowly pulled down her blanket cover over her face and Luness sighed before saying, "Dear, we really should get going and join the others. At this rate, we'll be the last of the group and maybe even get left behind. I doubt we're going on a mission today, so we could miss something fun." Grumbling again, Leandra's head poked out from the blankets and she muttered, "Fine," as she began extricating herself from the mountain of blankets.

Nearly an hour later, Leandra was done showering and put on some casual makeup to make her skin not-so-intensely-pale. She had dressed herself casually in some khaki pants, white sneakers, a button-up white shirt that was tucked into her pants, and then topped it all off with a heather grey beanie. She never could resist wearing a beanie unless she was going undercover. Her hair still had some blonde fringes, but most of the dye had washed out by now and her hair was returning to its natural platinum blonde color. She wished she could dye it a dark red, but merely accepted her fate for now. Luness was faring about the same with her red feather dye starting to come out of her feathers. She looked oddly splattered with the dark red on the ends of most of her feathers while the bright white was now starting to shine through.

Leandra mindfully grabbed her knapsack before they headed downstairs, but paused when she heard a faint tinkling sound inside. She did not recall putting anything made of glass in her knapsack and frowned at the sound. Luness hopped over seeing Leandra's expression and asked, "What is it, dear?" Kneeling down, Leandra began fishing through her knapsack and said, "I heard what sounded like glass, but I don't remember packing anything that might break like that." Luness tried to peer into the bag while Leandra continued to fish around. Finally, she exclaimed, "Gotcha!" while she pulled out a small leather pouch. "Huh, I don't think I remember ever owning this pouch," she said while she tentatively opened it and then upended the contents into her palm. Three tiny vials tumbled out and clinked against one another. Leandra continued to frown until she suddenly realized just what she was looking at. "Oh my god, Lune...these are those healing potions that I was given before our first mission with the Watch!" Inhaling sharply, Leandra looked at Luness and added, "Lune, I think one of these could either heal or mostly heal your wing." Luness' eyes widened at this and she almost immediately opened her beak like a baby bird might do. Leandra snorted at this, but then obliged by opening one of the tiny vials and upending it into Luness' open beak. For a moment, nothing seemed to happen and then Luness cried out in surprise at a shifting of her muscles within her wing. She squirmed about and even tried pecking at her wrapped wing that was itching incessantly, but Leandra held Luness still while she said, "Lune, don't! Let the magic do its own thing!" A moment later, the itching was gone and Luness stopped squirming in Leandra's grasp. Slowly, Leandra unwrapped Luness' wing and then Luness slowly opened the wing up, extending it nearly full length before she felt a small strain in her muscles. She pulled it back against her body and then smiled at Luness, "Thank you, dear. I think I should be able to fly in a day or two now. I just need to test it out and play it safe a little while longer, but...it already feels so much better!" Leandra laughed in delight and then carefully put away the remaining two vials and attached the pouch to her belt. She then hugged Luness and the phoenix happily hopped up onto one of Leandra's shoulders.

Shouldering her knapsack, Leandra led the way downstairs and into the dining area of the hotel. Just as she arrived, Xiao Hui announced tea and Leandra immediately replied, "Heck yes! Some tea sounds amazing right now." Luness rolled her eyes at this and Leandra let her companion down at the dining table while she walked over to join Xiao Hui's side. Leandra grinned and asked, "So, what tea do we get to enjoy this morning?" After their chat last night and her embrace of her companion once more, Leandra was feeling much more like herself now.

At the dining table, Luness cheerily said, "Good morning, everyone. I hope you all slept as well as my dear companion did. It was absolutely exhausting to wake her up this morning." Hopping over to Falarion's plate of bacon, Luness peered down at the distracted maned wolf before she began to snap up the pieces of bacon. She only had a short amount of time before he would notice her intrusion. Luness' wing was no longer wrapped this morning and she happily nuzzled it occasionally.
Barry waved off her offer pretty quickly, and it was the discomfort on his face that clued her into how close she was standing to Manjano. Her ears grew hot, and she took half a step away. She had just been trying to not talk loud enough to draw attention. Trying to ignore the silent exchange between the three of them, she took Manjano's plate and gave Barry a smile as he left.
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Beth gave Manjano a sigh and pointed to his one-crutch situation.
"I know you're going to hate me saying anything, but they're a pair for a reason. Crutches already stress muscles and joints in unnatural ways, and this is even worse." She wanted to add that she would beat him with the other one if he did it again, but she figured that wasn't the best idea given the look on his face.
"You're going to need help, Manjano. The only question is who you're willing to accept it from." Totus was pulling at her mind, something about a hypothetical broken wing. Beth glanced over at the owl with a small frown, then said softly, "Come on."
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She returned to the table, setting Manjano's plate down next to Falarion, and said something softly about putting in their coffee order. She disappeared for a few moments, and then came back to plop down into the chair Totus had been perching on.
With a small smirk, she jumped into the conversation by saying, "Well, I think uh.. Terry has great taste. Hunky men on the beach for all!"
Totus fluffed up his feathers, his beak angling upward. "I dare say that 'hunky men' sound like degenerates." If one looked closely, they could almost see the haughty twitch underneath his facial feathers.
Beth could only grin, as she caught sight of some waitstaff approaching with what appeared to be coffee.
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Simon chuckled at BB and leaned back in his chair. He found it very hard to imagine Barry being the sort to make any loud noises at all after having never heard him so much as make a peep. Given Barry's reaction with her breakfast, he had a funny feeling that BB, as per her usual, might be playing with Barry in regards to the snoring. He let his hand rest on the table and began to slowly lift his front feet of his chair off the ground and rock himself ever so softly like an impatient child. He waited and smiled as BB continued and when the subject of "hunky men" was brought up, Simon got a slight twinkle in his eye.
"I know the feeling. Jim here sounds like a freight train in the night sometimes. Every tried rolling over a 900 lb gorilla to get him to quiet up? Not easy I tell you. As for the hunky men...."
In a dramatic fashion, Simon pushed himself away from the table letting the chair he had been leaning in to fall backwards. He threw his arms up over his head, which he turned so that his good eye was facing the table. He slowly brought his arms down and crooked both so his wrists turned inwards and his biceps bulged underneath his clean white cotton shirt that was already just a bit tight.
With a cheshire grin, Simon the turned his arms downwards so that his pecs then began to bulged forward along with is biceps and then addressed BB and the other.
"I think I can help in that regard!"
Jimbo who had been sitting fiddling with his phone hadn't even looked up when he reached backwards and caught the chair by the back of the seat. He pushed it back up on four feet and then gazed up at Simon with a exasperated expression. He set the phone face down on the table and grabbed Simon but the belt in his gene's. He yanked hard and pulled Simon back down unexpectedly into his chair, making Simon yelp in surprise as he made hard contact with the wooden seat. Simon winced at his bruised tail bone and gave Jimbo a sharp glance. It was met with a stern expression of his own.
"Could you please act more civilized in public? I swear, and they call ME the animal."
Returning to his phone, Jimbo caught sight of staff approaching the tables and when one got close he flagged her with a wave of his hairy knuckles.
"I would very much like a black coffee and honey please." He gestured to Simon next "Do not give him anything with caffeine in it, please."

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Duik greeted everyone who came down warmly, his usual bright cheer and happy tone. It was as if the night before had never happened.
That at least made Alec sit a bit easier.
"Coffee sounds amazing." He smiled at Beth, who had offered. Alec watched Manjano and was about to get up and help when Barry passed him and he let it be. Beth was also with him now too. They had a good group. Supportive.
Simon's voice sounded behind him and Alec stiffened visibly. Through the link Duik felt a shock of anger and he cleared his throat to hide his surprise.
"Hey Simon!"
Amber 's eyes flicked to Duik and his partner for just an instant before she turned and set the phone down.
"If only it was sudoku BB." She said finally. The first words she'd spoken that morning. "We caused quite the commotion at the docks. I was checking the news feeds to make sure the reports didn't contain anything...complicated." She sounded tired.
Then she turned to Simon. "How are your injuries?" Her voice was back to being pragmatic and unemotional. She was the leader again.
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Duik fumbled with the menu to find the dish Simon had recommended His mouth began to water. "Hey Alec..."
Alec smiled down at his partner. "Yes ok, I'll pick one of those up too."

On Jimbo's screen the three dots popped up after a short while, bouncing at the bottom of the chat. Then the message went through:

Fuzz Ball
You commin down to breakfast? Or do you need more "beauty" sleep?
Go climb a building Banana Breath. I don't do mornings.
Amber and I were up pretty late running damage control on the media.
Make sure she eats something. I'll be down in 5.
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When Xiao came down it was the only time Alec looked up. His coffee was set before him just as she spoke and he raised the cup. "I'm all set, but thanks for the offer."
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Duik's first plate was put in front of him and he clambered up onto a chair so he could reach it. Alec pushed the bowl closer to him as he ate.
"Oh my god this is amazing." It was the chili and coconut dish Simon had suggested.
"Where has this been all my life?!"

When Leandra came down with Luness Duik stopped eating long enough to give her a wide smile. There was chilli sauce in the fur about his mouth. He was so relieved to see them together.
"How are you guys?" He asked, his voice taking on a much more quiet tone than usual.

On the topic of 'hunky men' Duik grinned. "What, you mean they're not enough?" He gestured with a paw around the table. Then Simon got up and struck a pose and Duik used both paws in a gesture of presentation.
Amber, elbow on the table, touched her fingertips to her temple and looked away. There was a soft colour to bridge of her nose, even as she gave the table an exasperated look.
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Between Duik, BB and Simon, Alec couldn't help but let a soft smile creep onto his face. The warmth of his team was slowly melting the cold anger of the night before. His eyes trailed over to the glass front and out onto the beach and slowly he frowned.
"The tide's a lot lower than I remember it being..."
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"Bad Boy Barry wants your most expensive tea. Put it on his tab, He told me specifically to tell you all that."

A soft laugh escaped her lips as she shook her head, amused at BB’s nickname for Barry. With a nod, Xiao Hui smiled, glad to see someone was in high spirits. The small hummingbird always seemed to lift up the mood wherever she zoomed and with what happened yesterday, Xiao Hui was relieved to see her energy returned. “Coming right up, you two.” She responded, humming quietly to herself as she waited patiently for the water to finish heating up.

In the meantime, Laohu made his way around the tables, following behind Barry before attempting to climb up next to an empty seat next to him as BB continued to chatter away. "Whaaaaaat, I bet there is tons of teas you want to try, Tea Boy. I'll call you Terry now. Berry Boy doesn't cut it anymore. Terry, now that's a name I can get behind.” A small “oomph” escaped Laohu's lip as a small low growl rumbled in his chest as he frustratedly and ungracefully got up on the chair, his tail dangling at the side. Shaking his head, Laohu amusingly rolled his eyes at the chatty bird before excusing himself by both Barry and BB. “Hope you don’t mind some company over here.”

Xiao Hui couldn't help but eye Laohu when BB mentioned snoring and Laohu could only huff once more, hearing Xiao Hui's thoughts in his head. Laohu absolutely was not having it this morning, or rather, a hungry tiger meant a moody kitty. The smell of food filtered through his nostril as he stared at dishes on the table. Xiao Hui could only shake her head. "I asked them to bring something out for you Laohu. It's coming." However, when Simon and Jimbo chimed into the conversation, Xiao Hui resisted the urge to laugh loudly.

But, before Xiao Hui could finish reassuring her companion, a server came out with a balanced nutritious diet for her tiger brother and placed it in front of him. Without so much as an indication, Laohu quickly ate, not minding his manners as a sigh escaped Xiao Hui's lip. "Table manners . . Laohu." She thought quietly despite knowing how odd it must be to see a tiger sitting on a chair when he could've sat on the ground. But, Laohu was insistent on learning how to sit like "humans" and decided it was "fun" or an experience of the sort. She couldn't deny him of such pleasantries, perhaps.

Laohu, on the other hand, was too busy chowing down to notice nor care about anything around him as the kettle whistled. Quickly taking the kettle out, Xiao Hui began to pour the hot water into at least five mugs. However, with a small startle, Xiao Hui spilled some slightly on the counter as she looked up, smiling softly as Leandra and Luness appeared with the rest of the company. The two seemed to be in better spirits as well. At Leandra's question, Xiao Hui took out the tea bags and placed them accordingly into the mugs. "Today's tea is chai. I hope you like it. Would you like added honey or anything?"

Soon, Laohu was finished with his food as he listened to the conversation around him in regards to "Terry" and "hunk of men". A small chuff escaped Laohu's lip, quite entertained at the topic. But, at hearing Luness' question and her comment of waking Leandra up in the morning, Laohu grinned lopsidedly, trying to hold back his laugh as well. "Morning, Lune. How is your wing? It looks. . . . better?" He tilted his head, wondering if it was his imagination. On the other hand, when Alex responded that he already had his coffee, looking up for a moment, Xiao Hui nodded, despite not knowing if he saw her response or not. Finally finished with making tea, Xiao Hui gently took two mugs, making her way over towards Barry, excusing herself as she came before placing the mug down. "Here you go."

After she settled the tea down, Xiao Hui went to get the other two mugs and made her way towards Lea, handing one to her before she found herself nearing Alec and Amber. But, hearing Amber's comment about them making a mess at the docks, Xiao Hui tried not to flinch at that thought. At the mention of the tides, Xiao Hui narrowed her eyes before looking towards the sea. "The tide's lower?" She questioned, trying to flit through her head if she remembered learning anything about the subject. "What would that entail?"

tags: SilverFlight SilverFlight , Bolts Bolts , zCrookedz zCrookedz , Lioness075 Lioness075 , Flutterby Flutterby
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Name: Manjano Companion: Falarion
Location: Hotel Lobby
Tagged: SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Alec, & Duik), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), deer deer (Xiao Hui & Laohu)
Once Beth began chastising him over his stubbornness, Manjano glanced sideways at his lone crutch and merely sighed in response. He knew she was right, which was exactly why he had no response for her. He could not hide his never-ending frustration over being hindered like this and the constant feeling of helplessness. He was going to be absolutely useless in the next mission unless some miracle helped him heal faster than expected. At the mention of accepting help, Manjano glanced up at Beth again with the intention of reassuring her, but she was already turning away and heading to the table. Manjano furrowed his brows at this, but held his tongue as he joined her and the others.

While Manjano reunited his crutch with its pair, Falarion trotted up to the table and happily began twisting his head about while he lapped up the many pieces of bacon on his plate. Even Manjano sometimes forgot just how tall Falarion was compared to most canines and he merely raised an eyebrow before muttering, "At least try to have some semblance of table manners."

Hearing this, Falarion perked up and froze with half of a bacon slice in his mouth. Mentally, he thought, "My bad!" before he promptly swallowed his piece of bacon. He looked around the table bashfully, but nobody else had said anything yet.

As the table conversation shifted towards hunky men, Manjano felt himself growing increasingly disinterested until his twin sister finally joined everyone. Much like a few of the others, he was pleasantly surprised to see Leandra had Luness on her shoulder once more and the two seemed at ease with one another. Looking more closely at Luness' wing, Manjano realized with a start that it was no longer wrapped and seemed to be doing much better. How it had healed like that overnight was beyond him and Laohu questioned the recovery, too. Excusing himself, Manjano took both crutches this time, as he moved over to join his sister's side while she was discussing teas with Xiao Hui.

Trying not to look too eager or hopeful, Manjano paused and then looked from Luness to Leandra. He did not wait to let them ask what his question was, as he blurted out, "How? How is Luness' wing healed like that? It looks as if nothing ever happened to it." He could not keep the pleading out of his tone, as he desperately wanted something to heal him faster than today's medicine would.
Name: Leandra Sinciato Companion: Luness
Location: Hotel
Tagged: deer deer (Xiao Hui & Laohu), SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Duik, & Alec), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB)
Luness was pleased when her thievery of Falarion's bacon went unnoticed and she continued to smile when Duik greeted her. She nodded at him and then paused when she noticed his quiet tone. She tilted her head to the side and then replied, "Much better this morning, no doubt about that. And what about you, dear?" She hesitated a moment before quieting her own tone amidst the morning breakfast chatter. "Is something on your mind, Duik?" It was obvious to her that something was nagging on his mind and she was skilled at focusing in on one person amidst a crowd unlike most, so the laughter and chaos around her did not deter her.

Nearby, Leandra grinned at Xiao Hui and exclaimed, "Oh, heck yes! Besides green tea, chai definitely is one of my top three." Contemplating the honey, Leandra tapped her chin for a moment before saying, "Y'know, honey actually sounds great this morning. Thanks, Xiao Hui!" Once her tea had been mixed appropriately, Leandra hugged the mug to herself, enjoying its warmth while she waited for the tea to steep. She turned around to see the group around the breakfast table and smiled at the chaos. She definitely preferred noise over the quiet after a storm or perhaps before a storm. She noticed Alec looking away from the table and outside at the beach beyond. He said something, but she could not quite hear him or read his lips. Curious now, she walked away from Xiao Hui and joined Alec's side before peering in the same direction. She quickly understood what had caught his attention. The tide was way lower than it had been before now. Fear made her heart skip a beat and Leandra said quietly, "Isn't this what it looks like before a tidal wave hits?"

Before Duik could respond to her, Laohu approached Luness and inquired about her wing. Turning slightly to face the tiger better, Luness beamed at him and replied, "It is much better, dear! Lea remembered belatedly this morning that she still has some of those healing serums left over from our first mission with the Watch. My wing still feels sore, as one would expect after such an injury, but it is not completely useless now." She spread it out slowly to show that she could move it now and only winced once it was fully extended. Tucking it against her body again, Luness then added, "I just won't be able to fly for a very long time for a couple days while I fully recover. Well, that's my best guess anyways."

Just as she finished explaining this, Manjano approached Luness and she furrowed her brows at him. Chortling, Luness said, "Dear, you do not have to beg me for such a thing. Your sister has the healing serums and I have no doubt she would be willing to part with one for you." After saying this, she turned to try and locate her companion and tilted her head to the side when she saw Leandra standing near Alec. She was staring out the lobby window with him and Luness felt a twinge of fear emanating from her. She gulped at this, fearing that their break was not going to last as long as everyone had hoped.
Beth made sure to set her coffee down as Simon stood up. Whatever was about to happen would make her laugh, and spewing hot coffee out of her nose did not sound like a good way to start the day.
As Simon flexed his 'hunky' status and Duik proudly presented him to the group, Beth laughed brightly, and clapped softly. "Bravo, absolutely, only hunky men I'll ever need." Jimbo pulled his partner back down, and Beth winked at the gorilla with a small smile. It was good to see Simon in good spirits, considering his injuries.
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Totus attempted to look aloof and annoyed, but there was a glow in his eyes when he watched Beth laugh. The next moment, she was digging in to some food that he didn't recognize. It smelled delicious, and involved dipping a bread-thing into a sauce-thing, which Beth always seemed to enjoy more than eating with utensils.
The hotel food was as delicious as she had hoped, but she had a sneaking suspicion that the cuisine would be even better if it was made by a local grandmother. She was enthusiastically dipping and eating when Alec spoke, so much so that she didn't really think about it when she added to the conversation.
"Yeah, its been like that for a while, I was wondering if we were on some kind of bay. If we were, a narrow inlet could explain the wild tides and maybe the whales getting freaked out and beaching themselves."
Totus blinked, and cocked his head, because he was pretty sure that the water outside was the open ocean. A really low tide would be odd, for the open ocean. There was really only one reason.
"Erm, Beth, I thought we were on the open ocean. And if we are, there would only be one reason for strange tides, which would require a lot of.. running and panicking." The owl hopped along the back of chairs until he was closer to the window, and clacked his beak nervously. The tide did indeed look low.
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Simon returned the smiles of the tables after his show of prowess and began to sip on the glass of water that had been place in front of him. He examined the others at the table and was delighted to find that Leandra and Luness had joined the table, looking like their old selves once again. Even more so, Luness extended her wing to show it had been mended over the night thanks to the serums Nigel had given them so long ago after their first mission. It was amazing that they were still viable after so long, but not surprising give Nigel's ability to make useful tech that had never failed him before. The thought made Simon reach for the two large bracers that were always strapped to his wrists, and adjust them just out of habit. His mind begin to drift to the past, Simon didn't even notice that the servers had returned and brought a large steaming plate of food, which they set before him. His eyes seemed to grow three times their size at the steaming pile of food. Half tempted to bury his face in the food as quickly as he could, he felt the strong pull of Jimbo's self control and decided to go for the chopsticks that had been provided at the table. He placed the utensil's in his fingers with surprising accuracy and began picking up pieces of his rice ball and dipping them into the chili sauce before shoveling it into his mouth with delight.

As Jimbo settled back back into his chair, he felt his phone buzz in the grip of his foot. He picked the phone up and scratched his chin at Calista's text. Jimbo looked up from his phone and began trying to think of what to get Amber. As he thought, he felt Simon beginning to prod him with his own mind. His mouth full of food, Jimbo heard him through his mental link.
"She liked the Hainanese Chicken with extra hot chili sauce. Get her that."
Jimbo raised an eyebrow to Simon who shrugged as he swallowed his mouth full and prepared for another bite.
As the serve pasted by, Jimbo tapped her on the shoulder and placed the order for Amber. As the server headed for the kitchen, Jimbo started in on his own meal. He poured a generous amount of the honey into his coffee, before turning it on the fruit. When the container was empty, he began to sip on the coffee between bite of melon, berries, and of course banana. As he ate, he listened to the others talk. He only stopped when Leandra and Totus both brought up the idea of a tidal wave. Jimbo could feel the tension from Simon, as he knew Simon could feel his, as the pair both stopped eating mid bite. Simon lowered his chopstick onto his half eaten plate and looked across the table at Amber. As he did, the server returned carrying a large plate of chicken, rice, and bright red sauce on the side, which she sat before Amber.

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BB stared up as Simon rose from his seat. If she had to place the feeling it would be like someone looking down at earth from space. Her entire being was in awe till the very end. "Well, I can die happy now. That's it everyone, we have reached peak hunk." She resigned while trotting into Barry's loose sleeve. Barry watched with a smirk at the swift action from Simon. He bet if they swapped bodies, no one would tell the difference till a fight broke out. He felt the quick pinch of BB entering his sleeve and brought it up to eye level. Two curled feet hung out like a drunk in a bathtub. Shaking his head, and with a huff, gently lowered the sleeve back down to not crush her. From behind, he noticed the sound of Laohu slip up beside him in a chair. With a friendly smile, he waved his hand out in welcome to his query. It's was a bit fun to see such a large feline sit at the table. Once the food was served to Laohu, Barry shifted away from the bits of mess. Animals are still animals after all.

Once tea was served, Barry placed his fingers to his chin and waved down to thank Xiao Hui. Giving it a few blows of air to cool it, he took a gingerly sip as he listened in on some of the alarming voices. Alec's questioning of the tide with Leandra and Totus's confirmation that it was looking bad filled his core with dread. He squirmed in his seat and inhaled some of the tea. Fighting the pinching pain as he coughed, he lifted himself from the table. BB, rolling out of his sleeve, sprawled out from the daze Simon put her in. Barry finally got a good look at the coast. Wrapping his arms around his chest, he tried to stop the shiver running down his spine. Feeling that dread in her partner, BB shook her head. "Ugh, I take one little hunky man nap and everyone goes super depressed again. A queen's job is never done..." She rolled over and sprung to her feet. Launching herself to the window, she landed on Totus's head. "Oof, yeah that doesn't look to good. At least you all know how to swim right? Cus I don't. Oh! Maybe we can do that titanic scene, Totus. We are on a door that is totally big enough for the both of us but for some reason I decide to let go! Wait..." She lowered her head and turned from the window to think.
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"What?" Duik was caught off guard by Luness' question. "Oh, nothing new its just...last night....it was crazy and with all that happened and, well, it's good to see you two together again." He shot the phoenix one of his famous grins.

Amber started when Alec noted the tide. She stood up urgently, looking for herself. Her teamates were right, and she knew exactly what was coming but... "This area isn't in the right place for..." A sudden realization and she looked practically panicked. She turned the look straight onto Simon. She didn't even notice the food Jimbo had thoughtfully ordered for her. There was only one reason there would be a tidal wave here...

"I do NOT know how to swim!" Duik said in a frightened voice, answering BB. He was looking at Alec, who couldn't keep the alarm from his own face after seeing their leader, usually so calm and collected, much closer to real fear.
"W-what, are they for real? Is there gonna be a tidal wave?!" Duik squeaked.
"What are you not telling us Strong?"
Alec tried to keep the edge off his voice. It didn't work.

Amber's expression changed then into one of controlled urgency.
"We need to go."
She grabbed her phone and sent a text to her partner.
"I'm having Calista notify the authorities. We have 2 hours. Let's move."

"Wait, what? What's going on?"
Alec was standing now too. "I think we need more info than this, don't you?"

"Move DeRois! Jimbo, take some people, go pack the van..."
She paused when she saw Alec hadn't moved. "That wasn't a suggestion. Alec."

"What's out there?" He pressed.
Amber's mouth shrank into a dangerously fine line.
"The merlion." She said finally, letting it sink in. "I need to get you as far away from the shore as I can."


From the lobby a tired family had just arrived. With them was a teenaged boy that looked fairly familiar. He was staring off into the ocean, seemingly entranced by the horizon.

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The world seemed to come to a stop the moment that the words left Amber's lips. In a way, neither Simon nor Jimbo were surprised by them. It was almost like, ever since they had found out that the group would be returning to Singapore, that the thought had been drawing closer and closer through the their churning thoughts; like a storm approaching the shore line through the crashing waves. Both of them had tried to ignore it, for the good of the mission and their team mates. Jimbo perhaps had realized it a bit sooner, after the nights prior activities with the heavy weaponry. Amber's fear, which was an exact copy of what pulsed through both of their bodies as well, only solidified it. There was no escaping the truth now, and they both knew it.
Jimbo was the first to come to his senses, Amber's words echoing in his mind like a gong being rung. When he was finally able to lasso them back he nudged Simon, who's chop sticks SNAPPED with an audible pop in his grip. sweat had already begun to dot his brow as he looked to Jimbo sharply at the nudge. He swallowed, trying to clear his throat of the lump that had formed in only a matter of seconds. His partners gaze seemed to clear his dark clouds behind his eyes and he looked towards the end of the table where Amber stood. He stood as well, leaving behind his half eaten plate of food.
"Amber's right. We need to leave, and get this area evacuated ASAP. I can't remember completely, but I think it was almost a mile radius? Last time the Merlion set a tidal wave. We had about two hours after the tide went out. That would give us enough time to get the vans loaded and out of here, maybe make it to the air port. If we called the planes as we pack......"
As he spoke Simone left his place at the table and made his way to Amber's end, his head whipping around to look out the windows almost frantically. He looked like he wanted to say more, but Jimbo's thoughts intruded for him to interject. The gorilla looked much calmer than Simon, thought whether he actually was or it was his species pensive stare it was hard to say. He to headed towards Amber and Simon but stopped before reaching them and turned to the group.
"I know what you two are going through, but we need to be smart about this. Chances are we are already to late, there may be no running. If that's the case, everyone needs to know what we are up against here. EVERYTHING, not just what Darcy and The Watch want them to know."
The last bit was directed towards Amber, hoping that in her years since their first mission here she had gained some more intelligence than what Jimbo was privy to.
The gorilla let his eyes sweep over the group as he spoke.
"You all know that Amber, Calista, Simon and myself were here prior to this mission. You all know we were with another team, one that we lost all of but the four of us. You may also know the name of the creature we were here to "investigate" called the Merlion. That knowledge, is more than we had the first time. We were sent in here essentially blind, investigating agitated wild life in the surrounding ocean that were wreaking havoc on the fishing industry. What we found was a 15 foot tall creature with the upper torso of a lion, and the bottom torso of a fish. Razor sharp teeth and claws, the ability to cause tidal waves that could level buildings, and an unbridled rage that none of us had ever seen before. It is terrifying to say the least, and if its on its way back, we need to be prepared. I just don't feel right running from this anymore."
At the end, Jimbo found his eyes had finished on Simon's. The pair starred at one another for what seemed like a life time before Jimbo stepped closer on his knuckles.
"Simon, we've been running from this thing for nearly 5 years now. I doubt the Singapore government is going to let this thing live if they can't get it out of here or under control. Now we both have our issues with The Watch, but that doesn't change the fact that we have a job to do and we need to do it."
Simon's fists were visibly trembling as the wave of fear washed over him, and then seemed to recede like the tide outside as Jimbo spoke. By the end of it Simon had calmed his breathing and was pulling the last of himself together before turning to Amber.
"We still have the concussion canon. Maybe we could disrupt the Merlion and its attacks with that until we can get a shot at it with the heavy sedation tranq's we have in storage?"

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Name: Leandra SinciatoCompanion: Luness
Location: Hotel
Tagged: deer deer (Xiao Hui & Laohu), SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Duik, & Alec), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB)
Beth and Totus began discussing the matter after overhearing her quiet discussion with Alec and Leandra shivered at the idea of the outcome that is expected from such a disaster. People without homes, lives lost, pets displaced, kids potentially separated from families...Leandra could remember other natural disasters and the videos and photographers that were so heartbreaking afterwards. Her heart began to race and Luness quickly flew away from Duik, her mind now focused on comforting her companion. Landing on Leandra's shoulder, nearly stumbling off while she got used to her sore wing, Luness shook herself. She then peered sideways at Leandra and said softly, "Don't fret so soon, dear. This group has always been resourceful. We'll figure something out."

Leandra tried to take in Luness' comforting words, but her heart refused to back down. Just then, Duik exclaimed his fear and inability to swim, not helping Leandra manage her anxiety. Frantic now, she turned to face the group just as Amber began to take charge of the team. Her head soon was on a swivel between Alec and Amber, then to Simon and Jimbo as they all began to banter over what was happening and what they should be doing. The idea of trying to face a monstrosity that had killed most of Simon and Amber's team years ago, Leandra squeaked, "I'm good, really! Fleeing sounds great when it means survival." Luness gave Leandra a concerned look since she was usually one of the more level-headed of the group.

When Simon began to discuss how they could take on the Merlion, Leandra instead looked to Amber and asked, "Where is the van? I can pack my few things from my room in, like, fifteen minutes and start getting the van ready to go right after."

Luness huffed at running away and left Leandra's shoulder to fly to Jimbo, suddenly veering to the side and instead landing on one of Simon's shoulders with a few feathers scattering around her. "Whoops, sorry, dear!" Looking between the pair, Luness said, "Perhaps we can split up? Some of us can help ensure civilians are safe and being evacuated while another team distracts the Merlion? If we can delay the tidal wave any longer, we would be able to save even more lives in the process." She highly doubted they were in any position to defeat such a beast, but delaying the inevitable would be wiser than simply fleeing the scene.

Leandra's now fearful expression turned on Luness and she exclaimed, "Don't you dare leave me to handle this on my own, Lune!"
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When Totus turned to look back at Beth, she had slowly stopped chewing, a piece of bread-thing hovering over the sauce-thing, staring out of the sea. It would have been comical, if not for the reaction Strong was having. She went from human-Strong, relaxed and making eyes at Simon, to the robot-Strong that they had first met. In one swoop, Totus was back at Beth's side.
She was already standing, listening attentively to what Simon and Amber were saying. There was a single glance in Manjano's direction, but it was so quick that Totus noticed more because of the flicker in her mind than in her eyes.
Simon and Strong seemed to be focused on getting them evacuated. Beth parted her lips to protest, but Jimbo started to speak first. Leandra and Luness were right on his tail.
As soon as they were done, Beth interjected, "I know there's some bad history here, and this thing is deadly, but we can't just leave. We have resources that could at least help the civilians here."
Totus's feather puffed slightly, but he knew better than to argue this point with Beth. Instead, he was recalling what personal rescue equipment they happened to have with them. Which was not much, and definitely not intended for this situation. The bird made a soft, dry sound, something of a cough.
Beth glanced at him, and then added, "I mean, if you can't be effective then go. But, even if we can't find a way to stop that thing, I'll be grabbing my supplies and finding a way to help, even if it's just me."
As she finished saying it, Totus hopped on to her shoulder, and Beth started to leave the table, already trying to remember where she put her black duffle bag.

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Name: ManjanoCompanion: Falarion
Location: Hotel Lobby
Tagged: SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Alec, & Duik), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), deer deer (Xiao Hui & Laohu)
Before he could get a response from either his sister or Luness, the two had anxiously joined Alec's side and Manjano was promptly ignored. Frustration welled up in him and Falarion let out a whine before his companion said something mean. Glaring at Falarion, Manjano gritted his teeth and then said, "How obvious do I have to make it that I want one of those damn vials before either of them reacts appropriately? I made it plenty obvious to Luness and she just flew away from me." He clenched his fists at his sides while Falarion abandoned his plate of bacon to join his companion's side. He lightly bumped his head against one of Manjano's hands and he relaxed slightly.

Glancing up at him, Falarion said softly, "Let's just go rejoin them and bring it up again. Everyone seems distracted by some-" He was cut off when the pair overheard Simon mentioning the Merlion again. Falarion gulped at this and Manjano merely sighed. The pair rejoined the group at the other end of the table and Falarion sat by Simon's side while he casually listened in on the conversation. Hearing there might be a tidal wave, Falarion sniffed and then made a face, "Salt water tastes terrible."

Meanwhile, Manjano walked up to his sister and forcibly took her wrist before leading her away from the group, struggling on one crutch again. Leandra began to protest, but stopped when she realized she might trip up Manjano in the process. "Hey, stop, I can walk on my own, y'know?" She gave him an irritated look while he let her go and then stopped once they were a bit away from the group. Trying not to clench his fists again, Manjano looked at Leandra evenly and said, "Look, Luness told me you still have some of those healing serums from our first mission. I really need one. Especially if we're about to be going up against the Merlion, of all things." Leandra blinked and then suddenly pressed a hand to her face. "Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry, Manny. I honestly just completely forgot once we got breakfast and then all of this talk of the tidal wave and Merlion...I swear, I wasn't intentionally avoiding you." Manjano appeared to visibly relax at this and then Leandra glanced over at the group before she pulled out her small pouch of vials. She frowned slightly when she saw she only had two left, but figured one for an emergency later on would still be good enough. She pulled out one and then tucked the last one away. Carefully, she uncorked the tiny vial and then handed it to Manjano, who took it with his available hand and downed it with a quick swig. He looked at his sister when he did not feel immediate effects and she laughed lightly before saying, "Nothing is immediate, Manny. Give it some time. Luness needed some time, too, when she took hers last night. Go sit down and take a breather while we all try to come up with a plan. Seriously."

Sighing, Manjano merely nodded, knowing better than to argue with his sister's medical advice. He hobbled away from her and sat back down at the breakfast table while the rest of the group continued to try and figure out where to go from here.
The sound of Duik’s frantic words resonated in Laohu’s ears as he finished scruffing down his meal. A small growl escaped his lips only for him to hear the end of the varying assumptions of the waves. It was only when Strong’s indication of fear and mutter of The Merlion did Laohu jump down from his chair as he watched the others momentarily freeze in their spots before frantically springing into action.

Hearing the booming voice of Jimbo and Simon, Xiao Hui stood there for a moment, eyes widened as she listened to her teammates revelation. This isn’t good at all. The mention of the creature in the sea only caused a small shock to course through her body as she rememberd their last encounter with a mythical creature. However, she couldn’t imagine the duress their team leader were under. However, there wasn’t a moment to lose.

With a nod, Xiao Hui quickly placed down the tea she had been holding, turning towards both Beth and Jimbo, “Splitting up into teams seems to be the best option. I’m onboard. I’ll help with the equipments, but we must hurry, Laohu?” She called out towards her tiger.

Laohu was already at Xiao Hui’s side before nudging Duik, “Cats shouldn’t like water but we can still swim. Just hang onto me if something does happen.”

At those words, Xiao Hui and Laohu were ready to leave the area.

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As Totus flung himself away from the window, BB spiraled backwards on to the window ledge with a light thud. "OWw.. some way to treat a lady." She huffed. Barry came to her aid, cupping his hands to hold her. He looked out once more while biting his lip. Turning on his heel they faced the group as things started to get heated. Some were frightened and wanting to run, the others gearing up for some battle. His jaw was clenched hard as the sides filled the room and he started to cover BB in his hands like a clam to a pearl. Knowing the fate of the last team and the status outside, Leandra's urgency called to him more than he liked. At this point, BB was fulled engulfed but managed to poke her beak out. "Ugh, is this what claustrophobic people feel? No thank you." She twisted and turned as she got her head out of the prison. "Heeeeyyyy Baaaaaaryyy. You're not running away again are you? Why is it always the bigger person being scared. It's like I'm going to have to tackle another crazy dangerous being just to get the job done. Now where did Totus go. I need my enabler." BB twisted around, mimicking an owl. She got a good view of everybody now. She couldn't help but roll her eyes. Maybe it was the foolish confidence but everyone seems to over complicate things. Just another day on the job that she loves.

As if reaching into the connection with Barry the little bird started to push forward while he followed along back to the tables. "This Merlion sounds pretty cranky, must not be a Monday kinda animal. I could sound the siren and Terry boy here could help direct people. You know, the usual. Also, has anyone ever tried just talking to the poor thing? Could be a torn in the Merlion's paw situation. Ooo! Ooo! What if the tech that exploded earlier and made whales go crazy did the same thing to the fella? I know waking up to a loud alarm would make me send tidal waves to crash into society. What if-" She stopped, catching a glimpse of the family walking in. "Oh hey there! Um... I don't think you'll wanna book a room here. It's gonna be terrible leaky pipes very soon. Want some bacon tho?"
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Amber made a face. "We have time if we move now."
Nevertheless while she continued to arrange their travel she let Jimbo explain the rest of what the team needed to hear. It wasn't until Jimbo proposed staying to fight that Amber looked up, her face neutral. Simon put forth his ideas as well and she listened as many of the others did too. She admired their bravery, but this time, she wasn't about to indulge it.

"I never was one to run from a fight." Alec said, "But I want Duik safe."
The hyena looked terrified but stood a little straighter. "I-I'm not going if you're not." He said with a tremble in his voice.

"I'm sorry team, but this isn't a choice. I am ordering you to get to the van and get to high ground." She looked pointedly at Simon. "All of you.
We'll meet in the garage in ten minutes. Whatever you haven't packed in that time gets left behind. Now move."

Amber didn't wait for the others to protest. She turned and left. The hallway to their room was deserted, but in her ear piece Calista's gruff voice sounded:
"The city sirens will be going off any second...you still wanna go through with the plan?"
"I never expected Simon would be here when it happened. So, yes. There's no question. I lost one team. I am not losing another."
"You know they're probably not going to accept that right? Especially that dumb ape...and probably Jimbo too."
"I don't care what they accept. They're expected to follow orders, and they will. I'll shoot Simon again if I have to."
"Even if their team leader plans on doing something stupid?"
Amber didn't answer, she kept walking.
"You should go with them Cal."
"What and risk losing my mind? No thanks, I'd rather die. We're in this together Amber. Whatever comes."

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((I have a feeling there will be protests, so I made a short post to leave room for them))
Name: Leandra SinciatoCompanion: Luness
Location: Hotel
Tagged: deer deer (Xiao Hui & Laohu), SilverFlight SilverFlight (Amber, Duik, & Alec), zCrookedz zCrookedz (Simon & Jimbo), Flutterby Flutterby (Beth & Totus), Bolts Bolts (Barry & BB)
Luness glanced in Leandra's direction at Beth's words and sure enough, Leandra had taken it the wrong way. She blushed at the idea of being ineffective in this situation and then frowned. A wave of guilt washed over her, but her fear kept her from rejoining the group. She looked down at the ground and scuffed a shoe while she thought to Luness, Is she right? Am I just being useless to the team by running away like this?

Luness' expression softened at Leandra's thoughts and she thought back, Dear, there's nothing wrong with running from a fight you cannot win. If you stick to your own plan, you can aid those still in the city and ensure the evacuation is as effective as possible. Luness paused and then added, My wing is healing and it would be best if I aided the group in delaying the Merlion's progression. If anything, I can still temporarily blind him.

Leandra felt a bit better after hearing Luness' thoughts, but her guilt hardly waned. She did not want any of her teammates to look down on her for her decision.

At this point, Amber mentioned the group having ten minutes to get to the van and at that, Leandra made up her mind. I'm sorry, I can't go with you guys. I'd just panic the entire time and be of little use. I'm going to help Amber. Like you said, we can help the people trying to escape the Merlion. I think that's where I'll be most helpful.

Luness nodded at her companion and then Leandra turned away, her mind set on what she should pack up in a duffel bag. She reached the elevators and promptly was heading upwards to her room. Once inside, she grabbed her duffel bag and tossed it onto her bed. Already, she was on the move throughout her room as she collected basic toiletries and spare sets of clothes. She had a strong feeling that she would be soaked at some point today and she was not entirely keen on remaining that way for too long. She did not have a lot of gear for this kind of situation besides her remaining healing vial. She carefully tucked way its pouch in a pocket of her khaki poncho before she donned it. She even grabbed a few crackers and assorted snacks from her room's food area and added them to her duffel bag. If not for herself, then maybe she could give them to anyone she helped today.

Satisfied with her collection, Leandra returned downstairs and avoided the main group, as she took a side exit of the hotel to head straight for the team's van. She hesitated when she saw nobody had turned it on yet, but went ahead and tossed her duffel bag into it before she settled to wait outside of it. She leaned back against the side of the van facing the hotel and crossed her arms, happy that she still had her sunglasses. Though, she had a feeling that if things went downhill fast today, then she may not need them for long.
Beth stopped short when Amber said it was an order. A year ago, she wouldn't have thought twice about disobeying it, but she felt more like an agent now than when she had first joined the Watch. While they had been gone, orders had been a pain, but they had also saved her life and the lives of those around them. Totus seemed to be thinking the same thing, because he almost instantly deflated. They both watched in silence as Amber left the room.
"She's not wrong. Staying this close to the water for too long will get us killed. It may be best to seek higher ground and then come back. And..."
"... if the tidal wave is going to precede the Merlion, we may not have any other choice. But if.."
"... I don't think the Merlion will just stop, its a wild animal and a mythic at that. I know.."
"... civilians will need help getting out, and those that get stuck will need rescue. We can't do noth.."
"... and we can't do it if we drown as well."
Beth scowled, and shifted her feet. Totus didn't look nearly as satisfied about winning an argument as he normally did.
After another heartbeat of silence from the pair, Beth turned back to Simon.
"Is there definitely going to be a wave before the Merlion? Because if there is, then Amber is right. We won't survive a wave to fight it if we stay here."
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Totus's attention wasn't on the large man, he had followed BB's gaze to the family in the lobby. The owl blinked in surprise. "Beth!"
She glanced over, and gave a vague hand motion that Totus took to mean 'handle it.'
The owl left her shoulder, and landed on the lobby floor in front of the family.
"Hello, folks, uh.." The bird watched the boy watch the water. "We met at the hospital, it was Billy, right? I'm afraid there's an emergency.." Totus trailed off, waiting for the boy to actually pay attention to him instead of the horizon.
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